Charles Leclerc has hailed his drive to second place at the season-opening Austrian Grand Prix as one of the best drives of his Formula 1 career.

Leclerc qualified a mediocre seventh but made the most of a chaotic season-opener to finish runner-up at the Red Bull Ring for the second season running.

The Monegasque pulled off some ballsy moves on Lando Norris and Sergio Perez in the closing laps, before being promoted to second place from third due to Lewis Hamilton picking up a five-second time penalty for his collision with Alexander Albon.  



“Well I am extremely happy to be honest, it feels like a victory today,'' Leclerc said. “We have been struggling since the beginning of the weekend. I would rate this one as one of my best races since I arrived in Formula 1 because I didn’t make many mistakes.

“I am extremely happy with the performance, also with the strategy, with our choices.''

Ferrari is hoping to rectify its lack of pace in Austria with a major upgrade which is due to arrive at the Hungarian Grand Prix in two weeks' time.

Its main deficiency seems to be on the straights - a stark contrast to last season - and Leclerc is hopeful the upgrade in Hungary can help remedy the SF1000's current issues.

“We are quick around the corners but we struggle [on the straights]. We will have a new package in Hungary to try to fix this issue.

“It has been a very difficult race today. Struggling to overtake and every time somebody was making a mistake then I was being very aggressive to try and take that opportunity, which we did so I am very happy to be P2.''